Pivot

Game Tactics and Parenting

 

Ok there has been a lot of talk about good and bad parenting since the great Gorilla, Harambe, thing at the Cincinnati zoo.  I’m not going to say anything about the lady who was watching the kid, I’m simply going to try and help parents understand tactically where you should try to be at all times when watching your children using tactical thinking and good old fashion game play.

First of all lets look at a scenario, you have four things you want to keep safe.  They all at any moment could run crazy directions and do dumb things to attempt to murder themselves.  There is only one of you, so where is the smartest place for you to be?  Let’s look at some pictures.

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See the green dots are the things you want to protect.  The blue dot is you.  If we take a look at the current scenario what do you notice?  See how it would be impossible for you to pay attention to all the green dots at once?  Why is that?  Positioning!  This is simple to explain, if you are the blue dot you have placed yourself in a tactically inferior position to fulfill your goal of keeping the four green dots safe.   If you were looking at the three on the left the one on the right could easily crawling into someplace they shouldn’t.

Equally as bad if you watch the one on the right like a hawk the ones on the left could be creating a master plan to take over the world, or escape somewhere to a dangerous location.  So where should you be?  Or better yet, where shouldn’t you be?

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See that picture?  The red circle is where you should not be.  To be 100% certain that you can keep track of all green dots at any given time you should be outside the red circle and facing the center of it.  Yes, it sounds dumb, and almost sounds like you cannot have any fun at all, but to meet your goal of understanding what is going on and having all the green dots be safe and understood at all times this is the position you should take.

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See how you are outside the circle that contains the things you want to keep safe?  This allows you to see everything that happens as it happens.  No surprises.  Now you say, what if they are not all equal?  What if one is prone to be crazy, or bad?  Then you position yourself in a way to be closer to that one.  Like this…

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See how you are still outside that circle, but you are closer to the one that is prone to do wacky and crazy things?  I colored the one in yellow that you wanted to be more ready to help when the time was needed.  Oh but things go wrong, I know.  What if one of the good ones starts fighting with another of the good ones?

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How do you handle this?  the trouble maker one you are nearest is being good, but only because you are by them and watching them intently.  If you ran to stop the fight, that the two that are shaded in red are having, then you would be violating the rule of going in the circle and lose sight of the yellow one and something terrible might happen.  Turns out to be tactically sound you have a couple options here that I see.  Lets start by showing what you should not do.

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You quickly run into the circle from your previous position.  You arrive at the fight and stop it, but where are you?  In the circle!  Can you see all the green dots at one time from within the circle?  No! No you cannot.  You are not doing the correct thing and the yellow filled dot suddenly crawls into something and stuff goes bad.  What can you do?  Think tactics.  What if you changed the circle?  A few seconds is not going to hurt the two fighting.  Let’s try to get to this situation now…

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See you grab the Yellow filled green dot by the face and move them to the white filled green dot.  This changes things up the circle gets smaller and you remain in a tactical position to see and remain informed about all the green dots situations.  Now you grab both the Yellow filled and the white filled green dots by the face and advance at the fighting pair.  This puts you in a position to keep all the green dots from being dumb and ending up somewhere they should not.

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This makes your circle of no entry very small.  You can start smacking green dots until they realize the errors of their ways like nobody’s business from this distance.  And nobody lost a foot or anything in the process.

Oh, but what if there was no time to gather the other two before the others were going to start stabbing each other?  Always remain calm and NEVER go into the red circle.  If you believe that one of the green dots will die soon in that fight.  You can always advance around the outside of the red circle to get close to the fighters and begin smacking away with extreme authority.

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Move like that and you can keep your eyes on all of the green dots like a champ.  You have successfully escorted your 4 green dots to safety without letting any of them get themselves into situations that cause anything to be killed.  Tactical thinking gets a lot done in more than just video games and warfare.  Keep these things in mind in your life and sometimes things work out better.  There is always that time when you just let one go to save the three and complete the mission though.

Hope this makes sense and remember tactics win.  Please do understand the humor and the factual awesomeness here.  I understand situations can be more dynamic than these, but keep a tactical mind as a parent and everything turns out better.

 

 

Drinking

Busy as Wow

Man has this been a hectic time of year.  I’m not even sure when the last time I wrote was.  Here is what has been going on though…

Our team for Violent Sol Worlds has been working hard to bring a ton of major functionality to the core code.  We have a Screen System, physics, map transitions, rendering, and analytics all baked in the the real game now.

It has been a lot of crazy work, but we have done well.  With that we had Christmas, and all that goes with it.  I am currently working on getting world interaction in the game now.  Why don’t you come check out our pages and see what we’ve been up to?

Greenlight – come give us a yes vote

ViolentSol.com – Tons to read here including creature bios


 

Come be a part of our Kickstarter – Violent Sol Worlds

Vote now for our Greenlight here

Check out more information on Violent Sol here

Follow me on Twitter @magicrat_larry

 

 

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50 Reasons You Need to Support Violent Sol Worlds

I asked myself this question, if I cannot come up with 50 reasons to support Violent Sol Worlds then why would you?  So here is my list…

The Art – It’s a top-down stylized survival experience that looks like a graphic novel in action.

BugAttack

The AI Overlord – Nothing will remain the same for long.  If you get good at surviving in your current situation then the AI overlord will generate a special experience to mix things up for you.

The Cars – What good is a near infinite world you get to walk around?  In this game you can walk or drive, gotta love that!

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The Creatures – There are an absolute ton of creatures going in to the game.  All I have to say is Rhino Turtle.

RhinoTurtle

Crafting Cars – There have been plenty of games with crafting in them, how about crafting a car?  Can anyone say tank?

Crafting Guns – you don’t just buy guns, you can make them.  Put the coolest laser rifle together to match your game play.  Heck just make a laser chainsaw.

The Corporations – The universe is being colonized with massive help from companies.  Here are a few – Mal-Atomic, Avrio, The RTA

Is that enough yet?  Come see our Greenlight and give us a quick vote. 

The Biomes – the planet will be diverse and varied.  There will be a ton of biomes for all he creatures to live in, from forests, to deserts and every other thing you can think of.

Building – You don’t just survive on a distant planet, you survive by building and adapting.  Construction of buildings is a huge part of the game.

SettlersHome

The Universe – Trust me the universe has a level of backstory that a sandbox survival game has not touched.  Each corporation, each faction, came from somewhere.  Nothing just exists, it all has purpose and evolution.

Farming – A man has to eat.  You will be able to plant crops and grow your own food for survival or profit.

The Maker – A key part of your survival in Violent Sol Worlds is the Maker.  It is the technology that allows for you to store molecular configurations of object and essentially print them from raw matter for use in your daily activities.  Need a gun, make it.  Need a car, make it.

CrafterPistol

The Technology – There is a huge mix of technology to be used.  Anything from an automatic miner to some old-time cars.  You will be shooting laser rifles, and conventional weapons.  You might even see some sort of hover bike, or laser chainsaws.

The History – How did a recycling company go from Earth to helping people light years away reconfigure molecules to form a lase pistol?  Well the history of Renew tells you that.  Nothing in Violent Sol Worlds is just thrown in, it all makes sense in the history of the universe.

Laser Weapons – Who does not love the idea of some top-down action with lasers?  I’m in.

CowboyFight

Is that enough yet?  Come see our Greenlight and give us a quick vote. 

Aircraft – So you can drive cars, why not fly?  So there are aircraft, and you can craft them.

Car Physics – Each car is simulated in a physics engine.  This allows for different terrain to change how a car handles as well as tires blown from gun shots.

Lighting – It’s not enough to have a cool comic book feel.  How about true lighting and shadows to help with the feeling of explosions and lasers flying around?

Conventional Weapons – Not everything is high tech.  Sometimes a nice shotgun does that job well and cheaply.

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Top-down – Survival is awesome.  How about survival from a tactical top down view with action combat?

The Mal-Atomic Device – You get to use a scifi device called the Mal-Atomic to help with your crafting.  It’s like an iPhone but more scifi and can help rearrange molecules.

Pets – You can have a pet cat, dog, or whatever.  Yes this is a thing.

Turrets – The game might just be cruel to you, so build some turrets for defense.  Laser turrets to help ward off attackers, expensive but effective.

Wild West Scifi – We landed on a wild west settler vibe for the game.  So it is scifi, but there are some wonderful wild west feels to the world as you attempt to settle the wilds of the Rim.

Is that enough yet?  Come see our Greenlight and give us a quick vote. 

Living World – You are a settler on a planet that will not stop trying to kill you.  Much like the old west on Earth it will keep throwing events at you that change up how you need to play to survive.

The Team – I like to call our team a dream team of game development.  Not one with super stars on it but one that is truly a team built for an unforeseen victory. Meet the Team

Team

Weather – There will be sun and there will be rain.  Each weather event can help or hurt you.

Open Development – Join our development by giving suggestions and feedback starting now.  You can also just watch us on Twitter and our website and see the progress of nearly everything we do.

@magicrat_larry

@TheRealF1tZy

@doublemintben

Modding – The game is being built from the ground up for you to mod.  This game will be able to live longer than most because of the new content you can produce for it at its core.

The Music – The music is composed purely for this game.  You will not hear the music anywhere else.

Don’t Walk Drive Mentality – This is a huge world you are settling on.  Don’t just walk for miles, drive.  We want you to be able to see a lot of places so cars are vital to this survival game and will be in from the early stages.

The Dream – The idea of the Violent Sol Universe is huge.  There are plans for many things beyond Violent Sol Worlds.  Supporting us early keeps this dream alive. See the dream here

Is that enough yet?  Come see our Greenlight and give us a quick vote. 

Play With Friends – Surviving with friends is often times harder than alone, but oh so much more fun.

Cowboys_small

Play Alone – See if you can make it alone in a world that is harsh and unforgiving.

Run your own server – Take control of a server for your own gaming community.  Don’t like most people, just your friends?  start up a server and only let those who you want in.

Continuous Development – Our team is a special one.  We move fast and get things done.  We will not stop this game and plan on a very long haul here.  We often times talk about the potential for ten years of development for content.  We will develop new and fresh things for this game as long as people keep supporting it.

Create a Colony – Why are you surviving on a planet 4 light years away from Earth if not to create something larger.  Work toward building a complete settlement to support more and more NPCs and players.

News Ticker – The universe is not dead while you are settling the planet.  Keep track of the news as things happen.  If Pirates start pestering Rim settlements yours might be next.

Is that enough yet?  Come see our Greenlight and give us a quick vote. 

Expand-ability – Violent Sol Worlds concentrates on planetary explorations.  We are making sure we can expand into space when we want to.

Laser Chainsaw – Yes, a laser chainsaw.  You gotta get wood somehow and swinging it at creatures sounds like a blast too.

lASERsAW

Calling Home For Population – Need a mechanic?  Call home and request one.  They probably will need a facility, and place to live though so be prepared to have some requirements met.

The World hates you – Yes, being one of the first people to land on a planet is going to be difficult.  The environment will not enjoy you and the AI overlord will make sure you have a challenge.

Equipment – It’s about the equipment.  Pick up resources.  Craft an awesome laser pistol.  Build a car with a turret.  Construct better armor.

Everything is a Resource – Kill a creature, use its horns for a new hood ornament.

Hood

Is that enough yet?  Come see our Greenlight and give us a quick vote. 

Action Combat – This is a top-down game so the action is going to be both tactical and fast paced.

 

Car Combat – Sometimes while driving things happen.  Sometimes those things require a high powered laser turret.  Sometimes they require missiles.  All I know is be prepared to drive and shoot.

 

The Crystals – We are in love with the crystals.  They have many properties and are the dynamic element in the universe that allows for many awesome crafting opportunities. Read a story about them here.

Crystals

Your Colony Ship – You we placed on the planet by an elaborate process.  Like the rest of the universe we figured it all out.  About your colony ship

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Simulation – We not only have action we also have simulation elements to the game as well.  Many systems work under the hood of this game to make the world feel alive

Your Crate – You get dropped off on the planet on day one in your crate.  Much like a train car, but this one is your home.  Don’t worry in no time you will modify it and make it a lot less terrible and a little more like home.

Support Violent Sol Worlds Today by checking out our KickStarter, our Greenlight and our website.  With your help and support we can make all of this a reality.

 

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KickStarter and Greenlight and Bears Oh My

So it has been a bit since we launched both Greenlight and KickStarter .  It has been interesting so far.  I am encouraged by Greenlight and blown away by the severe lack of KickStarter wanting to make money.

Let’s start with Greenlight.  We launched that thing and we blew up with traffic.  We got votes by the bucket load.  We unfortunately had some improvements to make and had a lower than what we had hoped yes percentage of 37%.  It was still fantastic and that percentage is nothign to be sad about.  Since then we fixed the wording on our page to better explain the game.  So for the past 8 days our yes percentage is 62% on average which is more like where we thought we should be.

So Greenlight is rocking forward and people are really liking Violent Sol Worlds and would like to see it on Steam in the future.  We have a lot more votes to go though, your vote would help greatly in promoting our title.  Please head over to our Greenlight page and login to vote it up.

Now for KickStarter.  We expected more from KickStarter than what they offered.  I know you should not rely on somebody else to drive traffic to you, but the difference between Steam on launch day and KickStarter was like the difference between a Saturn V rocket and a rubber band.  Both fly, but one gets somewhere substantial and quickly.

Steam_Kick

I’m just saying that They can make a ton more money if they actively improved their own traffic and pointed more people in an active way to new projects at least for a day or two to see if they catch or not.  The truth that we did not know is that your first day will be the exact same as your sixth day.  They did not seem to do what Steam did and drive people to you for a few days.  They simply provide you a website and that is it.

Really we have learned a ton about game development in the past few months and have really gotten a ton more fired up about our Title Violent Sol Worlds.  Mathematically all our current adventures are proving very good for us.  All signs still point to people loving the idea of Violent Sol Worlds and the development is going forward full steam.  With all that being said let’s go vote on the Greenlight and promote the KickStarter, let’s get this thing rolling.

Thank you all for your support.  

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Get ready for video content

So, our team has made a decision to start interactions in a more personal way besides blogging.  We are going to start doing videos to describe what we are making and thinking in a better way.  We are also going to start streaming more twitch sessions to give you a first hand look at how some stuff gets done.  I look forward to do this, even though I also dread the whole idea.

Now I am going to play Fallout 4🙂


Come be a part of our Kickstarter – Violent Sol Worlds

Vote for Greenlight here

Check out more information on Violent Sol here

Follow me on Twitter @magicrat_larry

Funded_Steam

Steam Greenlight, It Can Be Fun

I’ve been live with the Violent Sol Worlds team on Steam Greenlight for a few days now.  It is fun, and stressful.  We are really enjoying it so far.  The first few days we hit hard and were at a great trajectory and traffic was massive.  Now it is slowing down right as I expected it to.  So now comes the slow climb to the top 100.

The thing is we really wanted to get to at least 50% of the way to top 100 in the first high traffic time, and we did.  pablo (12)Now I would like to see about 2 percentage points a day go up, not sure exactly how hard that is to get.  The amount of traffic after about 3 days on Steam Greenlight goes way down.  You really need to drive traffic there yourself after that it seems.

So I am pushing a bit of Twitter today to see if I can get more voters there in that manner.  It always boils down to marketing.  If anyone tells you anything about indie game development it should be about marketing.  Get good at it and you will be fine.  If you are shy or think everything you do is not interesting you are doomed.

Anyway, Greenlight is going great so far I just hope it does not take 6 months to get there.  One thing I noticed is a lot of people really want only completely or near finished games on Greenlight.  This kinda stinks because that is the reason why a ton of games never even get to take advantage of things like Workshop, or acheivements etc.  They get so far in to their design, then here comes valve 90% into their project, with awesome things to integrate that everyone wants and they are hard if not impossible to integrate in.

We want to be greenlit early, so we can have that working relationship with Valve and their APIs early as to have a tightly integrated experience on Steam as soon as we can and not have people having to wait on or never get things like Workshop mods.  To get there We do need your vote so please do come by our greenlight page and join the cause to get Violent Sol Worlds Greenlit.

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Milestones

There are Milestones Nearby, Let’s Not Hang Out Here Long

I’ve been doing indie game development for a long time now and what has contributed to my lack of finishing has been staying on a milestone for far too long.  When you do this you tend to slowly lose steam.  You need to keep moving and keep a pace that will allow for excitement in your development cycle.

You should setup goals and milestones because they setup victories.  Remember though, there is nothing worse than never getting past one.  If you set a milestone, those checkpoints are often the areas of your project where you will tend to bog down in details that might not matter.  Dose everything need to be perfect to mark that off, no.  Get to a point where the basics of a milestone are done and working and move on.

Iteration is the key to not stalling out at a major milestone in game development.  Say you want character movement done.  Set your first milestone for simplistic walking, not all of it including jump, crouch, climb, and crawling.  See each one of those can be a small victory not just one.  A lot of people tend to want to bundle large amounts of features in to one game.

Take time to think about the victory points in your project and make sure they are not too large.  Break things down to smaller victories so you can have one every couple of days.  Large milestones will slowly kill your momentum and make it mentally harder to continue to push on a project where you might not be getting paid to do it.


Come be a part of our Kickstarter – Violent Sol Worlds

Vote for Greenlight here

Check out more information on Violent Sol here

Follow me on Twitter @magicrat_larry